Female labour migration in Johannesburg and the absence of African women in household

Mncube, Nkosinokwazi
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The participation of women in formal labour has been on the increase globally. Women constitute approximately 45 percent of the South African labour according to the World Bank. With limited employment opportunities in rural areas in Africa, there are high numbers of women migrating to urban areas in South Africa to seek employment opportunities. Consequently, this means that there is absence of women in the home and they leave their children in the care of relatives; this is particularly in cases of women in lower income groups who cannot afford alternative child care facilities in the cities. As a result, the number of women that are absent in their households due to work purposes is increasing. This study was qualitative in nature and it employed a case study design. Data was collected through face to face interview and semi-structured interview schedule was used in the study. The participants in the study were women who are from rural households and have left children with relatives of family member to come and work in the informal sector in Johannesburg.. This study is important to the social work profession in that the problem of female migration affects the family function and particularly children. It was hoped that the findings of this study would help understand how rural households function in the absence of mother. Keywords African women absence, female labour migration, households; informal sector
The Department of Social Work School of Human and Community Development Faculty of Humanities University of the Witwatersrand In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Bachelor of Social Work